Brisbane, Australia

Work Type

Full Time

Closing Date

Friday, 1st December 2017 - 11:00am 

The Company

UniQuest is the main commercialisation company of The University of Queensland (UQ), specialising in the commercialisation of intellectual property, research outcomes and expertise. UniQuest has a 30 year track record and was responsible for the commercialisation of the HPV vaccine Gardasil®, the Triple P Positive Parenting Program, the image correction technology found in two-thirds of the world's MRI machines, and Spinifex Pharmaceuticals, one of Australia's largest biotech acquisitions. Just some of UniQuest’s commercialisation outcomes in the area of agriculture and food sciences include the probiotic drink sold as PERKii, the plant trait start-up company Nexgen Plants Pty Limited, several crop licenses to companies including DOW Agrosciences, Advanta Seeds and PGG Wrightson Seeds, as well commercial agreements with undisclosed world-leading animal health companies.

The University of Queensland is an international leader in research and teaching in a comprehensive range of disciplines, including health and biomedical sciences, engineering, ICT, materials and nanotechnology, agriculture and the environment, food innovations and social science. Keys sources of intellectual property (IP) from UQ relevant to commercialisation in agriculture and foods sciences is from the School of Agriculture and Food Sciences in the Faculty of Science and two of UQ’s research intensive institutes, the Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation (QAAFI) and the Institute for Molecular Bioscience. UQ was ranked #19 worldwide and #1 in Australia for “Agriculture” in the latest QS World University Rankings.

The Role

  • Lead, develop and implement Business Development & Commercialisation activities in the area of Agriculture and Food Sciences
  • Provide commercial management expertise & support
  • Join an Australian industry leader that converts early stage technologies into commercial outcomes 

The role is titled Director, Commercial Engagement – Agriculture and Food Sciences.  This pivotal role reports to the Senior Director, Commercial Engagement (SDCE) - Life Sciences and will play a key role in building relationships and business development activities with industry partners. Business development and commercialisation activities will include the creation and negotiation of opportunities for transactions based on UQ intellectual property including licences, attraction of venture capital to form start-up companies and other commercial arrangements. 

The position will lead the commercialisation of technologies related to agriculture and food science and will be expected to manage all aspects of IP management and commercialisation across the portfolio.


The position will be responsible for building and maintaining strong relationships with relevant contacts, industry organisations and the investment community in the area of Agriculture and Food.

Generating deal flow as well as identifying and facilitating funding for commercialisation projects, including grants, investments and proof of concept funding, etc.

To be successful in your application, you will need to demonstrate knowledge and experience in the following areas:

  • Sector specific knowledge, experience and contacts
    • Tertiary qualifications in agriculture or food sciences, preferably to post-graduate level.
    • Broad international (preferable) and local industry contacts/networks.
    • Sound understanding of industry funding and granting bodies and schemes.
    • Knowledge of commercialisation pathways for agriculture and food technologies including, as relevant, regulatory requirements.
    • Previous experience relevant to agriculture and food in a business development position preferable (preference for >3 years’ experience).
  • Business development and commercialisation experience
    • Deal track record (licences and/or start-ups).
    • Evaluating technologies from technology, commercial, IP and market perspective.
    • Demonstrated understanding of intellectual property principles and expertise in the negotiation of contracts including licence agreements.
  • University knowledge
    • Demonstrated strong and positive relationships with leading researchers in the publicly funded research institution sector.
    • Sound understanding of university research management and university funding systems.

The ideal candidate will have excellent communication skills including experience making public presentations and experience of managing multiple projects and deadlines.

Further Information

If you require further information please contact UniQuest at jobs@uniquest.com.au 

Please send your application addressing the selection criteria, along with a copy of your CV to jobs@uniquest.com.au clearly stating the position that you are applying for in the title of the email.